Pro Football Hall of Fame reveals 27 modern-era semifinalists

CANTON, OHIO -- Six first-year eligible candidates, guard/tackle Larry Allen, kicker Morten Andersen, safety John Lynch, tackle Jonathan Ogden, defensive tackle Warren Sapp, and defensive end Michael Strahan are among the 27 semifinalists being considered for the Pro Football Hall of Fame's Class of 2013.

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The Hall of Fame's Selection Committee chose the 27 semifinalists from the previously announced list of 127 preliminary nominees. The list of semifinalists is typically limited to 25 names but this year there are 27 resulting from a three-person tie for the final position. The Hall of Fame's By-laws provides that the list shall consist of "25 nominees plus all ties."

In addition to the six first-year eligible nominees, one other previously eligible candidate, cornerback Albert Lewis has made it to the semifinalist list for the first time. Each of the remaining 20 nominees on the Selection Committee's list has been a semifinalist at least once prior to this year.

The complete list of modern-era semifinalists is as follows:

Larry Allen, guard/tackle: 1994-2005 Dallas Cowboys, 2006-07 San Francisco 49ers

Morten Andersen, kicker: 1982-1994 New Orleans Saints, 1995-2000, 2006-07 Atlanta Falcons, 2001 New York Giants, 2002-03 Kansas City Chiefs, 2004 Minnesota Vikings

Steve Atwater, safety: 1989-1998 Denver Broncos, 1999 New York Jets

Jerome Bettis, running back: 1993-95 Los Angeles/St. Louis Rams, 1996-2005 Pittsburgh Steelers

Tim Brown, wide receiver/kick returner: 1988-2003 Los Angeles/Oakland Raiders, 2004 Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Cris Carter, wide receiver: 1987-89 Philadelphia Eagles, 1990-2001 Minnesota Vikings, 2002 Miami Dolphins

Don Coryell, coach: 1973-77 St. Louis Cardinals, 1978-1986 San Diego Chargers

Roger Craig, running back: 1983-1990 San Francisco 49ers, 1991 Los Angeles Raiders, 1992-93 Minnesota Vikings

Terrell Davis, running back: 1995-2001 Denver Broncos

Edward DeBartolo, Jr., owner: 1977-2000 San Francisco 49ers

Kevin Greene, linebacker/defensive end: 1985-1992 Los Angeles Rams, 1993-95 Pittsburgh Steelers, 1996, 1998-99 Carolina Panthers, 1997 San Francisco 49ers

Charles Haley, defensive end/linebacker: 1986-1991, 1999 San Francisco 49ers, 1992-96 Dallas Cowboys

Joe Jacoby, offensive tackle: 1981-1993 Washington Redskins

Albert Lewis, cornerback: 1983-1993 Kansas City Chiefs, 1994-98 Los Angeles/Oakland Raiders

John Lynch, free safety: 1993-2003 Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 2004-07 Denver Broncos

Karl Mecklenburg, linebacker: 1983-1994 Denver Broncos

Art Modell, owner: 1961-1995 Cleveland Browns, 1996-2011 Baltimore Ravens

Jonathan Ogden, offensive tackle: 1996-2007 Baltimore Ravens

Bill Parcells, coach: 1983-1990 New York Giants, 1993-96 New England Patriots, 1997-99 New York Jets, 2003-06 Dallas Cowboys

Andre Reed, wide receiver: 1985-1999 Buffalo Bills, 2000 Washington Redskins

Warren Sapp, defensive tackle: 1995-2003 Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 2004-07 Oakland Raiders

Will Shields, guard: 1993-2006 Kansas City Chiefs

Michael Strahan, defensive end: 1993-2007 New York Giants

Paul Tagliabue, commissioner: 1989-2006 National Football League

Steve Tasker, special teams/wide receiver: 1985-86 Houston Oilers, 1986-1997 Buffalo Bills

Aeneas Williams, cornerback/safety: 1991-2000 Phoenix/Arizona Cardinals, 2001-04 St. Louis Rams

George Young, contributor: 1968-1974 Baltimore Colts, 1975-78 Miami Dolphins, 1979-1997 New York Giants, 1998-2001 National Football League

The list of 27 semifinalists will be reduced by mail ballot to 15 modern-era finalists. That list increases to 17 finalist nominees with the inclusion of the two recommended candidates of the Hall of Fame's Seniors Committee. The Seniors Committee nominees, who were announced in August, are defensive tackle Curley Culp, (1968-1974 Kansas City Chiefs, 1974-1980 Houston Oilers, 1980-81 Detroit Lions) and linebacker Dave Robinson, (1963-1972 Green Bay Packers, 1973-74 Washington Redskins).

The results of the modern-era reduction vote to 15 finalists will be announced in early January, 2013.

To be considered for election to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, a nominated player or coach must not have participated as an active player or coach for five consecutive seasons. A contributor, who is a nominee who has made outstanding contributions to pro football in capacities other than playing and coaching, may still be active in his pro football career.

Although there is no set number of enshrinees for any Hall of Fame Class, the Pro Football Hall of Fame's current ground rules stipulate that between four and seven new members will be selected each year. No more than five modern-era nominees can be elected in a given year and a class of six or seven enshrinees can only be achieved if one or both senior nominees are elected.

The Class of 2013 will be determined at the Selection Committee's annual meeting on Saturday, Feb. 2, in New Orleans, La. the day before Super Bowl XLVII. The election results will be announced immediately afterwards from the Super Bowl media headquarters.

The Class of 2013 will be officially enshrined on Saturday, Aug. 3 in Canton, Ohio as the main event of the Pro Football Hall of Fame's Annual Enshrinement Festival Celebration. Additionally, a record number of Hall of Fame members are expected to return to Canton to take part in the annual Enshrinement Festival as a part of the Hall of Fame's special Golden Anniversary Reunion Celebration.

Individual enshrinement tickets will go on sale in late-January. In 2013, the Pro Football Hall of Fame is partnering with NFL On Location, the League's event experience and hospitality source, to offer exclusive fan packages to the Class of 2013 Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Festival & Golden Anniversary. For more information, visit Profootballhof.com/festivalpackages.

The Pro Football Hall of Fame has created a special hashtag, #PFHOF13, to encourage sharing among fans about the selection process and nominees for the Class of 2013. The Pro Football Hall of Fame can be found @ProFootballHOF on most social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Viddy, YouTube and Pinterest.